Two-month-long peaceful Amarnath pilgrimage ends
Amarnath Cave Shrine, Kashmir, Aug 9 (UNI) The two-month-long by and large peaceful Amarnath pilgrimage ended today on the Sharavan Purnima (Raksha Bandhan) day with the arrival of the holy mace of Lord Shiva at the cave shrine and offering of special prayers.
According to a Shri Amarnathji Shrine Board (SASB) spokesman, around three lakh devotees had the glimpse of ice Shivalingam (phallic symbol of Lord Shiva) during this year's pilgrimage which began on June 11.
However, the number this year was very low as compared to last year when about 4.5 lakh pilgrims visited the holy shrine. The SASB had expected more than five lakh devotees this year.
The holy mace along with more than 100 'sadhus' and devotees, led by its custodian Mahant Deepender Giri, reached the cave shrine early this morning from Panjtharni.
The holy mace will leave here for Srinagar later this evening.
Forty-six pilgrims besides two locals died during the pilgrimage this year.
UNI AG PA HT1500